The Painted Tree is now open in Murfreesboro, and it is the perfect place to shop for the holidays. It is uncommon, as it is made up of lots of small boutiques that have been put under one roof. There is everything from gifts to home décor to clothing to upcycled vintage furniture.
“It’s like 250 Etsy shops in one building,” said one customer.
Begun in Bryant, Arkansas in 2015, and now headquartered in Little Rock, the concept has grown into over a dozen locations across the country with more opening all the time. The first one in this area is located in Franklin, Tennessee. Their concept is to create togetherness and mutual support among the vendors, developing a community.
What makes the concept unique is that it supports local entrepreneurs and artisans by providing them with a place to sell their creations and goods without having to staff a store. The cost of staffing and rent becomes a shared cost. It is perfect for those with side-gigs and old school mom and pop shops that are now harder to find.
“I got many inspirational ideas and loved the great vibes,” said another shopper. “It’s like an art fair every day.”
While it looks on the outside like it might be something like Home Goods or TJ Maxx, as it is located in the former Steinmart location off Thompson Lane in Murfreesboro, it is something completely different. It is not a big chain store, but it offers its vendors the opportunity to present like one in 40,000 square feet. There is so much to look at, that it may take several trips down the aisles to see it all.
“It’s a big space with a variety of vendors,” explained one online review, “selling all sorts of gift-worthy goods! Some holiday themed stuff, other items like jewelry, home decor, candles, clothing and more. There are still many vacant spaces for vendors, so I will look forward to seeing what else goes in!”
Some of the Middle Tennessee vendors represented are Murfreesboro artist Pam Pinkerton Mack, Carla and Company, Sweet Tea Candles, Merchant and Olive, Fizzy Fizzy, Boozy Candle Company, The Gingham Jellybean, Skin Joy Soaps, and Sue M. Marshall. From funny socks to hand crafted quilts to fun bath fizzies, there is something for everyone. Price points will be higher for items like fine art and furniture, and there are also lots of less expensive items.
“The process of getting accepted was very simple,” said Pam Pinkerton Mack. “I sent them images of my work and they were very accepting. They said I was just what they were looking for. They have been very helpful with lots of ideas for set-up…It is a fun environment for shoppers.”
“I was really impressed by this store,” said another reviewer. “I love shopping in little boutiques…, and this is essentially a Target-sized warehouse full of them. As others have mentioned, it’s also comparable to a craft show. Like a craft show, each booth has a slightly different pricing structure, but every single item I was interested in seemed reasonably priced…Since it’s so big, there’s lots of room to socially distance so this is a great option for gift shopping outside of the often too-crowded malls and big box stores.”
The store also has many special events, like Mimosa Mondays and live music the first Saturday of each month.
The Painted Tree
552 North Thompson Lane
Hours: 10:00 a.m. until 8:00 p.m.